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What Do Travel Nurses Do for Transportation?

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Health Carousel Travel Nursing
September 29, 2022
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Selecting and coordinating transportation to your next assignment as a travel nurse can be difficult. Let’s review transportation options for travel nurses, ways to save money, and items to take into consideration before making your decision.

Transportation Options for Travel Nurses

Depending on your assignment location and housing, there may be several or a limited number of transportation options. Let’s review the options for travel nurses below.

Self-Driving

Most travel nurses opt to drive their own vehicle to their next assignment location. Most of the time, this is the most affordable option. Plus, you will have the comfort of driving your own car and no limitations on where you can travel. Review the cost of driving your car to a new location, which includes the cost of gas, maintenance, and possible wear and tear. If your new assignment is across the country or starts immediately, it may be better to transport your car or get a rental car.

Transporting Your Car

Transporting or shipping your car to a new city is another alternative. This is a great option for travel nurses who have assignments far away from home. However, car shipping can be expensive since it’s based on mileage. Call several car shipping companies before making your decision, as most offer a free quote.

Car Rental

If you’re traveling to your assignment on short notice or across the country, then a rental car may be your best bet. If you plan on renting your car for the long term, many car rental companies offer discounted rates. However, if your assignment is greater than four weeks and depending on where you find housing, car rental costs can add up and cut into your budget. So make sure to weigh the costs before making your final decision.

Public Transportation

Public transportation is a great option for saving money. Most large cities offer public transit via bus or train. By using public transportation at your destination, you can fly to your next assignment and save money by not paying for a car rental or gas. When taking public transportation, take into account the extra time to get to work, so you won’t be late. Public transit runs on schedules, but can also have delays.

If you decide to take a local travel assignment, public transportation is a good option as well. Large bus transportation companies, like Greyhound, offer low-fare rides between cities. 

Living in an RV

Sometimes, travel nurses choose to live in an RV and travel the country. Travel nurses often choose this when taking short-term assignments. They drive their RV between assignments and then rent an RV space at a local RV park or facility while on assignment. RVs are a great choice for housing since they are like a temporary home away from home. Plus, it helps you save extra cash allotted from your housing stipend.

Travel nurses often choose to rent an RV first. This way you can decide if living in an RV is for you and your lifestyle before purchasing your own. While it can help save costs long term, there is a lot of extra maintenance with owning an RV. Do your research and consider this before purchasing as well. 

Choosing the Best Transportation based on Your Location

When deciding on the best transportation option, it should be based on the location of your travel assignment and nearby housing. Also, account for potential costs and money savings

Tier 2 to Tier 1 Cities

There are many tier 1 and tier 2 big cities throughout the United States. Tier 1 cities are cities with a large metropolitan area that can support global transportation, such as New York City or Los Angeles. Tier 2 cities have a little smaller metropolitan area, but still, have a large transportation system. Examples are Atlanta, Houston, Las Vegas, and Miami. 

If you accept a travel nursing job in either a tier 1 or tier 2 city, expect it to have a large public transport system. This means it will be easier for you to travel around the city and may be your best choice for transportation. This is especially true for New York City, where it’s easier to use public transportation instead of driving a car.

Small Towns

If you decide to take a travel nursing assignment in a smaller town, there may not be as many options for public transportation. You will need to arrange to drive or ship your own car or get a rental. Prices for rental cars in smaller towns are more expensive due to the lack of inventory. If you decide to rent a car in a smaller town, it’s more cost-effective to rent it from a nearby larger city and drive it to your new town.

Remote Areas

If you’ve accepted an assignment or found housing in a remote area, transportation options are limited. For instance, public transit, renting or transporting your car, will most likely not be available. This means you will need to drive your own vehicle, which can be a big difference in cost savings. Take this into account before accepting any contract.

Transportation Apps Travel Nurses Can Use

There are many transportation apps available for travel nurses to use as well. If you’re driving to your next location, map out your drive with apps like Google Maps or Waze. When traveling in a larger city, there are also public transportation apps available. The Citymapper app has large city transportation routes and schedules. The app even alerts you when to get off at your stop. 

Weigh the pros, cons, and costs of each transportation method before making your decision. Speak with your travel nursing recruiter today, as Health Carousel Travel Nursing offers discounted rates for some transportation methods. We are your trusted partner in finding you the perfect assignment and are here to help. 

Author Bio

Amanda Marten NP-C, MSN has been a certified nurse practitioner for over three years. With eight years of nursing experience, she has worked in a variety of specialties including urgent care, travel nursing, post-surgical, and intensive care.

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